Sep 21, 2019 - Jan 19, 2020
Art Institute of Chicago
Collecting the past while recording the present.
In the 1930s, as the United States was struggling through the Great Depression, a rising interest in early American vernacular arts—collectively referred to as folk art—converged with major documentary photographic projects. As artists, curators, collectors, and government administrators sought to define American culture as distinct from Europe, they identified in these two burgeoning fields a national culture they considered egalitarian, unpretentious, and self-made.